Coatue, Tiger Global buy $100M of talent network Braintrust’s tokens

By Jane Lanhee Lee

OAKLAND, Calif (Reuters) - Investors including Coatue Management and Tiger Global Management bought $100 million worth of tokens by Braintrust, a talent network built using blockchain technology, Freelance Labs, one of six companies building Braintrust, said on Thursday.

Braintrust, a non-profit network founded in 2018, helps companies and talent find each other and already has over 700,000 members and hundreds of companies, according one of the founders of the network and CEO of Freelance Labs Adam Jackson.

"We're owned by our users and because we're owned by our users, we lower the rake to zero," said Jackson, explaining that the rake is how internet companies like Uber or DoorDash try to maximize the fee imposed on the drivers or consumers that can sometimes turn them away.

"So we have this disruptive fee model that attracts the talent and wherever the talent goes the client goes."

The Braintrust token is called BTRST and started trading on cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase in September, said Jackson.

Braintrust has 250 million total tokens today. Each token has one vote and their owners can vote on major changes on the network.

The $100 million token sale gives the batch of investors about 5% of the total tokens and so far 32% of the total Braintrust tokens have been distributed, said Jackson. Users who introduce talent and companies that connect for a job receive commission in tokens and users helping to build the network with work such as marketing, community management or building software are also given tokens.

Funds from the latest sale of tokens will be used to grow the network and fund community grant programs to build out the network, said Jackson.

(Reporting By Jane Lanhee Lee; Editing by Kim Coghill)